Five Good Things for 10/15/2015

Five things I encountered today that were interesting, educational, beautiful, edifying or that I otherwise found to be…well, good. None of these are promotions and I do not receive any benefit from sharing them. I just like them.

1) Hater Free Wednesdays. Are you a comic fan who hasn’t always felt welcome in comic book stores or other nerdy spaces because of your gender, race, or sexual orientation? Or even just because of your lack of hardcore comic-book knowledge? This is a great resource cataloging comic-book stores that are safe and welcoming for geeks of all kinds. It’s how I found my local store, Black Cat Comics, where I’ve always felt totally at ease (it helps that there’s a really cool chick who works there and is incredibly helpful and welcoming to n00bs). Hater Free Wednesdays also documents stores that people have been made to feel unsafe in. And if you’re looking for a gaming store, check out Hater Free Saturdays.

2) Magnets! I knew it. Thor’s Hammer is nothing more than mere mortal trickery, as proved by this man who made a replica Mjolnir that only he can lift.

3) Pasta carbonara is one of my favorite foods. and I especially love this recipe which includes jalapenos and sweet corn for a southwestern spin on the dish. It is a little tricky to make the first time, but not as scary as it sounds. If you follow these excellent directions you will do just fine. This recipe is best if you can buy or make fresh pasta for it. And of course, use high quality bacon!

800px-Fall-tree-branch-leaves-along-river_-_Virginia_-_ForestWander4) In love with autumn? Now’s a great time to take a hike and enjoy the colors. National Parks Traveler has a roundup of some of the best fall hikes in the National Parks. If you live near or will be traveling to one of these parks, check one out. In my neck of the woods, the Alpine Pond trail at Cedar Breaks National Monument is really something to see, and I have very fond memories of Acadia National Park in the fall as a child. Not near a park? The Weather Channel has maps of foliage all over the country so you can still go see the colors at their peak.

Bee-apis5) Who doesn’t love pollinators? Wait, you don’t? Then take a moment to think about pretty much everything you like to eat and also all flowers. Go ahead, I’ll wait…

Okay. You do love pollinators, right? I knew it! Unfortunately we’re in a bit of a pollinator crisis at the moment but we can all help. Check out The Pollinator Partnership for why pollinators are important and how you can help (and beautify your neighborhood at the same time). There are planting guides as well as other resources to help our bees, moths, butterflies, and hummingbirds do their jobs.

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